Program Update: Interagency Ocean Observation Committee – June 2014

2016-06-28T19:29:49+00:00 June 27, 2014|


The Interagency Ocean Observation Committee (IOOC) and United States Integrated Ocean Observing System (U.S. IOOS) Program Office established a new IOOS Modeling Task Team that will develop a data modeling strategy that uses ocean observations to inform science managers and decision makers of past, present and future/forecasted conditions. The effort will provide specific technical input to the IOOC, U.S. IOOS Program Office and the IOOS Association over the next 5-8 years. The modeling strategy also addresses the National Ocean Policy implementation plans. The IOOC Modeling Task Team met on June 18, 2014 in order to decide on an approach to developing a national modeling strategy/framework. The meeting brought together regional, national and international perspectives on modeling and resulted in an effective discussion of the appropriate content for the framework. Staff is working to finalize meeting summary notes and develop next steps for the working groups that will take on the specific tasks identified during the meeting.

The IOOC has been working steadily with National Ocean Council (NOC) staff on fulfilling the National Ocean Policy (NOP) Implementation Plans. Ocean Leadership Staff worked with the co-chairs in order to submit updates on all NOP actions assigned to the IOOC through the online SharePoint system. Additionally, staff worked with the Interagency Working Group on Facilities and Infrastructure (IWG-FI) to complete updates to additional NOP action items regarding the development of integrated remote sensing systems frameworks. The NOC Office is developing brief written highlights using input from subgroup success stories. The online components will provide an update on each NOP action based on progress reports from the IOOC.

The Biological Integration and Observation Task Team (BIO-TT) is working to improve the availability of existing IOOS core biological variables and identify and prioritize additional cross-cutting biological and ecosystem observation needs. They have closed a survey to federal agencies on existing core biological variable datasets and are now in the process of analyzing results and tailoring outputs for use by the IOOS Program Office and the ocean observing community at large. The team is currently holding calls to identify participants and develop a workshop format. In addition, the team has made significant progress towards completing analysis of the survey results that will feed into a final report to the IOOC informing the next steps in terms of biological variables.   The team has set a window for the meeting of November 3-7, 2014 and is currently discussing a three-day format to be held at Ocean Leadership.

The IOOC Post-Summit Task Team will be wrapping up its final report on Summit Recommendations progress and future steps forward. The next step will be for the IOOC to identify projects to initiate. More information about the Summit, including the final report and community white papers, can be found in the U.S. IOOS Summit Report released this summer at

The Data Management and Communications Steering Team (DMAC ST) held a call to discuss the future of the team and their workflow methods. Options discussed, which will be presented at the upcoming IOOC meeting, include maintaining the steering team, developing a smaller group of liaisons to serve as point persons for the development of project specific working groups and to simply have a set of ad hoc working groups. The format of the workflow will likely be an online collaborative forum, built on to the current github site. The team also continues to be fully engaged in the systems integration project, which will ultimately result in a series of testing products and a process for assessing the level of dataset/metadata/service for member agencies with recommendations for closing identified gaps. As part of this project, team members are currently engaging in outreach to solicit additional scenarios and queries about metadata from the ocean observing community and coastal managers.

Upcoming Meetings:

  • The next full IOOC meeting will be July 28, 2014 at the Consortium for Ocean Leadership.
  • The in-person BIO TT meeting will be held November 3-7, 2014 at the Consortium for Ocean Leadership.

More information about the IOOC can be accessed at, which contains updated information regarding commenting opportunities on committee activities, upcoming and past events, and relevant scientific, technical and policy publications. If you have any questions, please visit the committee’s website or send an email to